Chris’s birthday brings in over £1,000!

News and Blog

Have you or someone you know got a birthday coming up? Are you looking for a different way to celebrate? Why not set up a birthday fundraiser to support us?

‘Donating your birthday’ changes your special day from being about receiving gifts to giving them instead. Asking people you love to donate in recognition of your birthday could provide a family under St Catherine’s care with the chance to make amazing memories during an incredibly difficult time. It could help our teams manage the symptoms of someone’s illness, provide vital wellbeing advice or bereavement support

When Chris Sykes recently celebrated a special birthday, she decided to donate her big birthday. Here she shares more.

“I’ve volunteered with St Catherine’s Hospice since 2008. Before coronavirus I helped in the kitchen and coffee shop and would spend time sitting with patients. Since COVID I’ve been volunteering on the screening desk at the hospice. It’s been great to get back and to help keep visitors safe.

The visitors are always so grateful to be able to see their loved ones and don’t even mind having to wear PPE

The reception team are always keen to help people and when it gets busy it’s nice for me to be there to say, “the receptionist will be with you in a minute” or “can I help?” to visitors.

St Catherine’s is a very close-knit team and as it got nearer a big birthday of mine I was thinking about doing some fundraising for the hospice

I thought I don’t need anything, but I could ask people to make a small donation to St Catherine’s for my birthday instead.

I’ve always admired people who do fundraising challenges, I’m not a marathon runner or swimmer but this was such a simple and straightforward thing to do

Asking for birthday donations seems a bit of a cheat’s way out as I’ve raised money for a fantastic cause without doing anything but as I’ve never fundraised before, it was an easy way to fundraise.

The fundraising team sent me instructions for setting up my JustGiving page which was so easy.

I’ve been overwhelmed by how much people have put in. People have donated far more than they would have spent on a gift but that’s because the hospice is such a lovely cause. In a way, I’ve got far more out of watching my fundraising total climb every day then I would have opening gifts no matter how thoughtful and well-intended they were

I’m so thrilled that I’ve raised £1,300 with Gift Aid! I know the benefit that’ll bring to patients and families

Whenever I’ve been volunteering at St Catherine’s it’s always felt like whatever problems I may have at home are nothing compared to what people are going through at the hospice. Volunteering gives me perspective and reminds me we have nothing to complain about really.

I always come away from the hospice with a strong feeling that I’m very lucky.

I had a lovely time celebrating my special birthday, my husband took me away to Hever Castle for a night’s bed and breakfast and I spent the weekend in the Cotswolds with my two daughters, their husband and partner. It was a wonderful way to celebrate.”

If like Chris you’d like to donate your birthday you can set up a birthday fundraiser on Facebook here: or get in touch with our Fundraising Team about setting up a JustGiving page.